The Faber Report

  Monday, 15 Jul 2019 | 9:04 AM ET

Symantec and Broadcom cease deal negotiations: Sources

Posted ByThomas Franck

Symantec and Broadcom have ceased deal negotiations, sources tell CNBC's David Faber. The people familiar with the matter added that Symantec would not accept less than $28 a share.

People familiar with the matter added that Broadcom indicated in early conversations that it would be willing to pay $28.25 per share for Symantec, but that following due diligence knocked that figure down below $28.

Symantec had surged earlier this month after it was revealed that Broadcom was in advanced talks to acquire the security software vendor. Faber had reported the two sides were negotiating a price and had seen possible synergies of $1.5 billion.

Symantec shares dropped 12.8% to $22.30 on Monday.

Symantec has been dogged in recent years by management turnover and a softer core business as cloud security companies have captured enterprise market share and as newer companies offer ways to protect mobile devices.

Chipmaker Broadcom, in the middle of an acquisition sprint, bought CA Technologies for $19 billion last year and tried to purchase Qualcomm before the U.S. Department of Justice blocked the deal.

Even without Symantec, Broadcom has been working to acquire an infrastructure software company and has considered Tibco, three people familiar with the matter told CNBC earlier this month. Vista Equity Partners acquired Tibco for $4.3 billion in 2014.

Still, the acquisition of a software company could give Broadcom a needed boost as trade tensions hurt its core semiconductor business and its relationship with Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei. Broadcom cut its forecast for chip sales this year by $2 billion after Huawei was blacklisted in May from buying U.S. technologies.

»Read more
  Tuesday, 2 Jul 2019 | 9:43 AM ET

T-Mobile, Dish reach divestiture deal, pending DOJ concerns: Sources

Posted ByThomas Franck
T-Mobile CEO John Legere (L) speaks as Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure looks on at the New York Stock Exchange, April 30, 2018.
Brendan McDermid | Reuters
T-Mobile CEO John Legere (L) speaks as Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure looks on at the New York Stock Exchange, April 30, 2018.

Dish Network and T-Mobile have agreed to a divestiture deal that brings the wireless carrier a step closer to gaining government approval of its merger with Sprint, people familiar with the matter told CNBC's David Faber.

However, there are still issues the Department of Justice is actively focused on before it would allow a deal, the sources added.

While the corporations involved have agreed on some of the largest components of the divestiture deal, the government remains concerned that the agreement isn't enough to ensure Dish would represent meaningful competition following the $26 billion merger between Sprint and T-Mobile.

»Read more
  Thursday, 27 Jun 2019 | 10:51 AM ET

Howard Hughes considering strategic alternatives, sources tell CNBC

Posted ByDavid Faber
The Howard Hughes Corporation, which is an owner, manager, and developer of different types of real estate throughout the U.S., has hired bankers at CenterView to explore strategic alternatives that include a sale of the company, according to people familiar with he situation. CNBC's David Faber reports. »Read more
  Thursday, 27 Jun 2019 | 9:43 AM ET

Howard Hughes Corp hires Centerview Partners to explore alternatives, including a sale: Sources

Posted ByDavid Faber

Howard Hughes Corp., an owner, manager and developer of different types of real estate throughout the U.S., has hired bankers at Centerview Partners to explore strategic alternatives that include a sale of the company, according to people familiar with the situation.

The company, a one time spinoff from General Growth Properties, has been struggling to command a valuation that the board, led by its Chairman Bill Ackman, feels is appropriate for a company with its collection of assets and performance metrics.

People familiar with the board's thinking say it is unclear the company is well suited to the public markets because — unlike most other real estate companies — it is not a REIT, but a C-Corp and has a diverse collection of assets that does not lend itself to the recurring and predictable cash flows real estate investors may be looking for.

The company is both an owner of land, such as 60 acres of beach front in Honolulu, and a developer of residential communities, such as the Woodlands in Houston and commercial developments such as the South Street Seaport, only a few blocks east of the New York Stock Exchange in downtown Manhattan.

»Read more
  Friday, 31 May 2019 | 10:13 AM ET

DOJ wants Sprint, T-Mobile to create conditions for a fourth competitor in the wireless market

Posted ByDavid Faber
CNBC's David Faber reports the latest news in Sprint and T-Mobile's attempt to merge. »Read more
  Thursday, 30 May 2019 | 9:40 AM ET

CBS board is preparing for talks with Viacom, sources say

Posted ByDavid Faber
CNBC's David Faber reports on the latest news about CBS's preparation for talks with Viacom. »Read more
  Thursday, 30 May 2019 | 9:37 AM ET

The board of CBS is preparing for deal talks with Viacom: Sources

Posted ByDavid Faber

The CBS board is preparing for merger talks with Viacom, people familiar with situation said.

The long-anticipated talks between the two companies controlled by the Redstone family's National Amusements are expected to begin in mid-June, though discussions could begin even sooner, the sources said. Viacom CEO Robert Bakish would likely run the combined entity.

Though no talks have occurred, Shari Redstone, vice chairwoman of CBS and Viacom, has long been in favor of marrying the two as the former looks to bulk up its balance sheet. The added size would likely help CBS compete for National Football League broadcast rights against big technology companies like Amazon and Facebook.

National Amusements has twice tried but failed to combine the media companies. Should the tie-up ultimately occur, National Amusements would likely pivot to a second deal, people familiar with the matter told CNBC earlier this year.

Discovery Communications, for one, was interested in selling to CBS or a combined CBS-Viacom entity, two people familiar with the matter told CNBC in January. The company is also expected to continue talks to acquire premium entertainment network Starz from Lions Gate, CNBC reported last week.

CBS' search for scale comes as big media faces continued hikes to carriage fees, making it more difficult for them as viewers ditch cable and satellite TV subscriptions in favor of over-the-top and streaming options.

»Read more
  Monday, 6 May 2019 | 9:10 AM ET

Anadarko likely to deem Occidental's buyout offer superior to Chevron's bid on Monday: Sources

Anadarko Petroleum's board of directors is likely to determine on Monday that Occidental Petroleum's buyout offer is superior to the agreement the board reached last month to sell Anadarko to Chevron, sources tell CNBC's David Faber.

The decision would flip the momentum of the bidding war in Occidental's favor and put pressure on Chevron to sweeten its $33 billion offer.

Occidental has taken several steps to outmatch the much larger Chevron since launching its $38 billion rival offer nearly two weeks ago. On Sunday, Occidental revised its bid, offering to purchase Anadarko for 78% cash and 22% stock, compared with its earlier 50-50 cash-and-stock proposal.

Increasing the cash component of the deal means Occidental will not have to hold a shareholder vote on the acquisition, making it more certain that the driller could complete the deal.

Occidental was able to offer more cash after securing a $10 billion preferred stock investment from Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway. Occidental also inked a deal to sell Anadarko's African oil and natural gas assets to French oil major Total for $8.8 billion, which would also fund the cash component of the acquisition.

If Anadarko's board does deem Occidental's bid superior, Chevron will have four days to put another offer on the table. Anadarko would have to pay Chevron a $1 billion breakup fee if its board ultimately chooses Occidental's offer.

Shares of Occidental initially fell following Faber's report, but were last up more than 1.6% after the driller announced first quarter earnings that beat Wall Street's expectations. Chevron's stock price was up about 1.1%.

Anadarko's stock price spiked nearly $3 per share, or about 4%. The jump may signal the market expects Chevron to counter Occidental's revised offer.

Anadarko did not return a request for comment. A spokesperson for Chevron referred inquiries to Anadarko.

»Read more
  Monday, 29 Apr 2019 | 12:18 PM ET

Head of DOJ's antitrust division says he has not made up his mind on T-Mobile, Sprint deal

Posted ByKate Rooney
Makan Delrahim testifies before the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary on his nomination to be an Assistant Attorney General, Antitrust Division of the US on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on Wednesday, May 10, 2017.
Ron Sachs | dpa | AP Images
Makan Delrahim testifies before the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary on his nomination to be an Assistant Attorney General, Antitrust Division of the US on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on Wednesday, May 10, 2017.

Despite reports that it won't be approved, the chief of the Department of Justice antitrust division said he has yet to come to a decision on Sprint and T-Mobile's planned merger.

"I have not made up my mind," Makan Delrahim, assistant attorney general for the Department of Justice antitrust division, told CNBC's David Faber during a "Squawk on the Street" interview Monday from the Milken Institute Global conference in Beverly Hills, California.

The Wall Street Journal earlier in April reported the $26 billion planned merger is unlikely to be approved in its current structure, citing people familiar with the matter. The report casts doubt on the fate of the mega-deal. The most immediate hurdle, according to the Journal, came from Delrahim's antitrust division, which is reportedly considering whether a deal would present an "unacceptable threat to competition."

Shares of Sprint fell as much as 12% after that Journal report, while T-Mobile dropped by 4%. Sprint shares were slightly positive after Monday's CNBC interview, while T-Mobile's stock was down more than 2%.

Delrahim said his department does have an eye on price competition and the potential for more consolidation in the industry to raise bills for the average consumer. The DOJ is looking into "coordinated effects," meaning companies would not compete on prices anymore if it's no longer in their best interest.

"Those are the factors, and there are strict guidelines that we follow, based on case law handed to us; we are continuing to investigate that," he said. "My job is to make sure the analysis is done properly and make sure the facts are there."

The $26 billion deal would combine the third- and fourth-largest wireless providers in the U.S., a market with only two other participants: AT&T and Verizon. Sprint and T-Mobile have argued that the merger is necessary to compete with the two larger carriers, and would provide greater access to 5G. T-Mobile CEO John Legere defended the deal before Congress in February, arguing that the deal would create jobs and lower prices.

"With 5G and other technologies, you're going to be able to use that phone for more than just communicating with your best friend or texting," DOJ's Delrahim said. "You're getting your media, you're getting video — we want to be sure to encourage that, but ultimately, is there going to be a price effect when those two combine?"

While more players in any market typically means more competition, Delrahim said there was no ideal number for the total amount of wireless companies.

"There is no magical number — it's what the facts and the economic evidence shows us," Delrahim said.

— CNBC's Christine Wang contributed reporting.

»Read more
  Wednesday, 24 Apr 2019 | 7:00 AM ET

Occidental Petroleum bids $76 a share for Anadarko, trumping Chevron offer for the driller

Posted ByDavid Faber

Occidental Petroleum bid $76 a share for Anadarko Petroleum on Wednesday, higher than a previous offer by Chevron for the oil and gas driller.

The new Occidental offer, which was sent via a letter to Anadarko's board on Wednesday, is half cash and half stock, specifically $38 in cash and 0.6094 Occidental shares. It values Anadarko at $57 billion, including debt.

Chevron announced an agreement on April 12 to buy Anadarko for $33 billion in cash and stock, valuing the company at $65 a share. CNBC later reported there was another bidder for Anadarko from Occidental, which was offering mid-$70s per share before Chevron stepped in with its offer.

After Occidental disclosed its bid, Anadarko shares surged 11.6%, rising above $71.

The Chevron offer is a 75% stock and 25% cash transaction. The breakup fee for the Chevron-Anadarko deal is said to be 3% of the deal, sources said.

"Anadarko has great assets," Occidental CEO Vicki Hollub said in a interview on CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Wednesday. "We are the right acquirer ... because we can get the most out of the shale."

Hollub said she considers this a friendly offer, even though Anadarko may not see it that way. The offer is 20% above where Anadarko was trading on Tuesday.

Anadarko confirmed that it had received the Occidental's unsolicited bid. The company said its board will carefully review the proposal to determine the best course of action for shareholders.

"The Anadarko board has not made any determination as to whether Occidental's proposal constitutes, or could reasonably be expected to result in, a superior proposal under the terms of the Chevron Merger Agreement," the Company said in a statement.

Occidental shares fell about half a percent on Wednesday. Chevron's stock was down 3.1%.

"We are confident the transaction agreed to by Chevron and Anadarko will be completed," said Kent Robertson, manager for global external affairs for Chevron.

— With reporting by Tom DiChristopher

»Read more